Energy and Industry

Oman: Shell and Total sign up for gas schemes

Muscat has signed separate memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with Shell and Total to develop recent natural gas discoveries in the Greater Barik area of Block 6 in central Oman, close to BP’s Khazzan tight gas field which was brought onstream in...

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Iran: UK firm to develop Keranj field

UK-based Pergas International Consortium – a collection of 13 companies from Asia, Australia, Europe and North America focused on developing oil and gas projects in the Middle East – signed a heads of agreement with the National Iranian South Oil...

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Iran: Total signals withdrawal

French oil major Total has signalled it may withdraw from Phase 11 of the South Pars offshore natural gas field. In a statement issued on 16 May the firm said that, in light of the impending US sanctions, it will have to unwind its operations in Iran...

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UAE: Adnoc sets out $45bn downstream investment plan

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) has unveiled plans to invest Dh165bn ($45bn) in downstream projects over the next five years. The plans were set out at the Adnoc Downstream Investment Forum in Abu Dhabi on 13 May and follow a number of...

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OMV takes minority stake in UAE offshore concession

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and Austria’s OMV signed an agreement on 29 April which will see the latter take a 20% stake in the Satah Al-Razboot and Umm Lulu offshore oil field concessions, in exchange for a $1.5bn participation fee....

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Oman’s Duqm refinery breaks ground

Duqm Refineries and Petrochemical Industries Company – a 50/50 joint venture of Oman Oil Company and Kuwait Petroleum International – broke ground on the site of the new Duqm refinery at a ceremony held on 26 April. Oman’s third refinery will...

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Morocco refinery problems for Al-Amoudi/Al-Sultan empire

Despite moves to mobilise new finance, concern is growing in Morocco about the financial health of the North African kingdom’s only refinery, operated by Société Marocaine d’Industrie de Raffinage (Samir) at Mohammedia, and its ability to remain the dominant player in the national products market. This follows the announcement of losses in 2014 and questions about the ability ...

Issue 993 - 21 May 2015

Financial and political agenda underpins Gulf commitments

The massive support from Gulf-based institutions for a new and hugely ambitious programme of power sector investments in Egypt may not be as quixotic as it first appears. The intention to back multi-gigawatt coal and renewable generation projects – announced at a conference in Sharm El-Sheikh in mid-March by seven large developers from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait – is underpinned ...

Issue 990 - 2 April 2015

Iraq: Baghdad and KRG finally agree on oil revenues

The Iraqi federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) announced a draft agreement on sharing oil revenues on 2 December, following two days of negotiations between federal Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi and KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani. The deal, which builds on a temporary agreement signed in November, still needs to be approved by parliament and written into the 2015 budget. ...

Issue 983 - 11 December 2014

Russia considers nuclear co-operation with Iran

While in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani stated Tehran’s intention to continue working with Moscow on nuclear energy. “We are negotiating power generation using nuclear energy with Russia,” Rouhani told journalists on 27 September. “We will continue co-operation with Russia, as well as with other nations.”Rouhani said Tehran was, so far, satisfied ...

Issue 980 - 30 October 2014

Arbitration rules in Crescent’s favour versus NIOC

An international arbitration panel examining the failed deal between Crescent Petroleum and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to supply gas to the UAE has determined that the 25-year contract was valid and binding, and that NIOC has therefore been obligated to deliver gas since December 2005, according to a 10 August statement from Crescent’s partner Dana Gas. Crescent said it ...

Issue 976 - 4 September 2014

Oman: Government extends curb on foreign workers

Oman is to extend curbs on the hiring of foreign workers in the construction and housekeeping sectors as part of efforts to save more jobs for local citizens and limit outflows of money from the economy. The hiring of expatriates by private companies in those two sectors will be banned for six months from 4 May, the official Oman News Agency (...

Issue 968 - 17 April 2014

Improving relations between Baghdad and Ankara put KRG on edge

Recent promises to mend relations between the Kurdistan Regional Government and Baghdad have not led to any real progress on disputes over politics, land and oil. And as Baghdad makes overtures towards its former sparring partner – and close Kurdish ally – Turkey, the government. The 29 April framework accord signed by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime ...

Issue 958 - 14 November 2013

Iraqi Kurdistan: Dana Gas takes KRG to court

The largest energy investor in Iraqi Kurdistan, Sharjah-based Dana Gas, has begun arbitration proceedings against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) at the London Court of International Arbitration. Dana and its partners in Iraq say they want to “clarify certain contractual rights”, and recoup more than $1bn in unpaid receivables. The KRG says there are no outstanding receivables and that, in ...

Issue 957 - 31 October 2013

Qatar gas swap deal with Egypt collapses


Back in April, with relations between Qatar and then Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi looking strong, Qatar agreed to supply between 18 and 24 LNG cargoes to Egypt, which desperately needed gas to fulfill supply contracts and meet summer domestic demand. But disagreements over pricing saw the number of cargoes fall to 13 and, by mid to late August, reports started to surface that ...

Issue 954 - 19 September 2013

QP seeks increased role

Qatar will start supplying Dubai with liquefied natural gas in 2011, once the Qatargas 4 project is completed, Qatar Petroleum (QP) gas development manager Khalid Mohammed Al-Hitmi told GSN. Qatargas 4 is a joint venture between

Issue 888 - 29 October 2010

Qatar throws Benghazi a lifeline

Doha’s offer to buy crude from the interim council puts it at the forefront of initiatives to end the Qadhafi regime

Issue 898 - 8 April 2011

Kurdish oil compromise masks deep divisions

The Kurdistan regional and Iraqi federal governments have reached a temporary agreement on the export of oil from the Kurdistan region. But a resolution could yet be blocked in Baghdad where oil policy is still going nowhere

Issue 894 - 11 February 2011

Retired Bush-era officials make good in Kurdistan

While US diplomacy may not be getting very far in Baghdad – vice president Joe Biden’s recent visit did not lead to any breakthrough in negotiations on a new government – former diplomats and officials are doing well in Iraqi Kurdistan, acting as advisers to the Kurdistan Regional Government or its commercial partners

Issue 882 - 30 July 2010

Ambitious Crescent ties up with the Russians

Sharjah-based company’s oil and gas exploration deal with Rosneft will focus on the Mena region

Issue 878 - 4 June 2010

Iran looks east to outmanoeuvre sanctions

As the United States pushes for further sanctions over Iran’s nuclear programme, China’s emergence as a major player in oil production threatens to undermine efforts to target the Islamic Republic’s besieged energy industry

Issue 872 - 5 March 2010

Gamble pays off for Qatar’s LNG masterplan

Qatar ‘bet the farm’ on LNG but, more than a decade later, its determination has paid off

Issue 870 - 29 January 2010

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Bahrain's Economic Performance

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Gulf boundaries and hydrocarbons infrastructure

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The Gulf region: economy and society

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Iraqi Kurdistan hydrocarbons infrastructure map

Revised in January 2015, this map provides a detailed overview of hydrocarbons infrastructure in the Kurdistan area of Iraq.

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Sadr’s re-emergence injects populist dynamic into Iraqi politics

While the post-election narrative in Iraq has focused on Moqtada Al-Sadr’s enhanced position as political kingmaker, the...

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Saudi Arabia: Cautious narrowing of gender gap responds to social shift

The 29 April announcement by Saudi Aramco of the appointment of its first female board member, former Sunoco chairman and...

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Can Oman deliver on long-held promise to diversify its economy?

There are positive signs – but no yet conclusive evidence – that speed is picking up in Oman’s efforts to rebalance its...

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